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Theme Of Deviance In Benny And Joon

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Deviance is described as “the recognized violation of cultural norms”(Macionis 238). While deviance can include crime, it is not always such. Deviance can mean trying to sneak into a hospital room, desperately searching for someone like the character of Benny in the movie Benny and Joon. Or it could be preforming on the streets for people to watch. Deviance isn’t always a criminal act. The movie Benny and Joon gave several examples of deviant behavior portrayed by the three main characters, Benny, Joon, and Sam. Benny is a character who is constantly looking after his mentally ill sister, Joon. Benny was shown as a guy that lived a boring, uneventful life. He never did anything out of the ordinary or odd. Merton’s Strain Theory of Deviance…show more content…
This lead to one of the biggest questions from the movie, how did he become that way? Hirschi’s Control Theory is a theory that states “that social control depends on people anticipating the consequences of their behavior”(Macionis 248). It was shown in the movie that Sam had a complicated relationship with his family, so his past is a big reason as to why he acts so deviant in the future. On of the four types of social control is attachment. Attachment is family, friends and school relationships. Sam was first introduced as one of Benny’s friends “crazy cousin”. It was clear that he did not enjoy having Sam around. This can reveal that Sam has a weak relationship with his family as a whole because he wasn’t even living with his parents. This would lead Sam to acting deviant without worrying about what they would think of him. It was also later revealed that Sam was kicked out of school based on his actions. Sam never had to worry about his family or school once that relationship broke off. Another type of social control is involvement. Involvement can mean many things, but it’s basically about holding a job, going to school, or participating in a sport. The character of Sam, as stated before, was kicked out of school. So, he didn’t have school keeping him away from deviant behaviors. And then there 's the reveal that Sam can’t write or read well. Sam had made an attempt to get a job at a movie store, but he would 've had to do an application, which required him to write. He was shown to be scared and nervous after he attempted at write on the form. Sam had little involvement in anything because he was a poor writer and reader, which lead him to act more deviant. A final reason as to why Sam acted so deviant, was because had little opportunity in life. He was self conscious about that fact that he couldn 't write, so he never made attempts to move up in the world. He
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